RAIN
by Claribel Alegría (translated by Margaret S. Peden)

As the falling rain
trickles among the stones
memories come bubbling out.

It’s as if the rain
had pierced my temples.

Streaming
streaming chaotically
come memories:
the reedy voice
of the servant
telling me tales
of ghosts.

They sat beside me
the ghosts
and the bed creaked
that purple-dark afternoon
when I learned you were leaving forever,
a gleaming pebble
from constant rubbing
becomes a comet.

Rain is falling
falling
and memories keep flooding by
they show me a senseless
world
a voracious
world—abyss
ambush
whirlwind
spur
but I keep loving it
because I do
because of my five senses
because of my amazement
because every morning,
because forever, I have loved it
without knowing why.

From Casting Off by Claribel Alegría. Translated by Margaret Sayers Peden. Copyright © 2003 by Curbstone Press. Distributed by Consortium. Reprinted without permission of Curbstone Press. All rights reserved.